Pierre Marc JohnsonAd. E., G.O.Q., MSRC



Pierre Marc Johnson is counsel and acts as lead counsel and strategic advisor to international partnerships during trade negotiations with respect to investments, new information technologies, the biomedical and entertainment sectors, as well as financial products.

Former Premier of Québec, lawyer, and physician, Mr. Johnson is known for his expertise in the fields of international trade, negotiation, international partnerships, environmental law, health law, and public policy. He also has extensive experience in international negotiations for the United Nations on environmental and development issues.

Since 2009, he has acted as chief negotiator for the Government of Québec in the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement between Canada and the European Union (CETA) as well as in the softwood lumber dispute between Canada and the United States.

Mr. Johnson has advised the Commission for Environmental Cooperation (CEC), an international organization created by Canada, Mexico, and the United States under the North American Agreement on Environmental Cooperation (NAAEC). In 2003, he chaired a similar effort for the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD).

Co-author of The Environment and NAFTA — Understanding and Implementing the New Continental Law, published by Island Press, and of Beyond Trade: The Case for a Broadened International Governance Agenda, he has also penned numerous essays and articles on international trade, globalization, and the environment. His expertise and experience enable him to act as counsel for both domestic and foreign governments and institutions, to participate in the proceedings of advisory committees, and to speak on the phenomenon and impact of globalization.

Mr. Johnson has served as a director or member of advisory committees for some twenty major corporations. He currently serves on the board of directors of companies in the biopharmaceutical, motion picture, and mining industries.

Representative mandates

  • Represents the Government of Québec in negotiations to end the softwood lumber trade dispute with the United States
  • Chair of the Inquiry Commission on the partial collapse of the Concorde overpass (2007)

Professional and community activities

  • Institut Veolia Environnement (foresight), Paris
  • Chairman of the Board, Centre Jacques Cartier, Lyon
  • Chair of the Steering committee of the Centre d’études et de recherches internationales de l’Université de Montréal (CÉRIUM)


  • The Best Lawyers in Canada (Woodward / White) in the field of international arbitration, since 2012
  • Named Avocat émérite by the Barreau du Québec, 2017
  • Université Claude Bernard Lyon I, France and Université de Montréal, holds honorary doctorates
  • Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, recipient of the Grand Croix of the Ordre de la Pléiade, and Grand Officer of the Ordre national du Québec
Best Lawyers 2022


  • M.D., Université de Sherbrooke, 1975
  • LL.L., Université de Montréal, 1970
  • B.Sc., Collège Jean-de-Brébeuf, 1967

Boards and Professional Affiliations

  • Thérillia (biopharmaceutical)
  • Muse (motion picture production)
  • BlackRock Metals (mining)
  • Advisory committees of Gestion Juste pour Rire (performing arts production)
  • Cycle Capital (environmental technologies fund)


  • Arbitrator
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